Manchester United's three best players in 3-1 win over Aston Villa
Manchester United got a difficult stretch of league games off to a great start by coming back from one-nil down to beat Aston Villa 3-1.
Ole and the squad have been landed with a congested fixture list which will see them play six games in 17 days.
A win today was crucial to keep a firm grip on second place and Champions League football next season, with the added sweetener of delaying City’s title celebrations for at least a few more days.
Here are the three best performers from today’s win against Villa…
The teenager was a buzzing bundle of energy from the first whistle today.
He demonstrated a side of his game that is blossoming of late – his playmaking.
We’ve seen plenty of evidence to suggest that he is a clinical finisher, his goal today was evidence of that, and his style has often been compared to that of United great Robin Van Persie.
But in recent weeks we have seen Greenwood pull out some incredible assists.
Today he was drifting in off the left-wing and spraying passes into the box with his peach of a left foot, creating opportunities for Pogba and Rashford.
Not content enough with that, he drove his way through the Villa defence on multiple occasions, managing to fire off some difficult shots for goalkeeper Martinez to save.
And then came the goal, sucking Villa defender Tyrone Mings in before rolling him on the turn, Greenwood fired in a low punishing drive into the left-hand corner, the type of goal we are coming to expect of the teenager these days.
The Frenchman started his third game in a row in the left-side attacking midfielder role and it looks like it is starting to gel.
He gets to showcase his best attributes and removes the defensive responsibilities he has struggled with in the past that come with the central midfield role.
What he lacks in the explosive pace that Marcus Rashford usually brings to that role he makes up for with exquisite technique, vision and strength.
It’s the little things that make Pogba such a great asset: ball control and flicks around the corner to start attacking moves, strength to hold play up and players off the ball, and positioning to hang back in case the ball breaks outside of the box.
Winning the penalty with his trademark strength and sparking the comeback was a prime example of it.
It seems that only Pogba knows where he will play his football next season, with his contract up and potential to leave on a free at the end of this one.
But the prospect of playing in this role long term could be enough to keep the world cup winner at Old Trafford.
In his 250th club appearance, Luke Shaw contributed with another standout performance that must make him a shoo-in for Gareth Southgate’s plans come the summer.
The England left-back showed his pace and strength as he bullied Villa players off the ball, squeezing them out of space to press forward in.
As we have always known with Luke Shaw, his attacking prowess is up there with the best left-backs in the league and today he provided another attacking outlet to drive at defenders in the style that Rashford normally would, which Pogba does not quite have the pace to do.
Now defensively as reliable as he is offensively, Luke Shaw has had a memorable season which will see him central to Ole’s plans next season.
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